The necessary gear lay in their appropriate places on the gangway and deck, ready to be rigged when the yard was swayed up enough to permit it. Boyles had by now reached the maintop platform and peered over the nettings, waiting for the next in what would be a series of orders regulating this particular venture.
"Stand by on the lifts and braces!"
Even as he watched, the burton and yard purchase were checked one last time to ensure they were properly set. These would control and support the yard as it was swayed up, and so had to be in order.
The men on deck heaved, taking all the strain of the yard's weight on the lifts and braces, and succeeding almost at once in raising the mainyard into the air. Once it was judged sufficiently elevated, the order was given to hold and previously-designated men hurried to rig up the yard's gear.
Boyles glanced at the topmen crowded onto the mast platform with him. "Won't be long now," he told them. Not with this crew, certainly. These lads knew their business as sailors.
"Lifts and braces, sway aloft!"
Up it came, ready to be secured to the mast. Some well-timed adjustments to the lifts saw the yard squared, then the fore-and-aft tackle was slacked away. This would be the difficult part, Boyles thought, but his lads would be keen to ensure that this
yard did not come loose like the previous one had.
Shouted orders rang out tinnily from below, as the officer giving them was using a speaking trumpet. In short order, the parrel was passed, the lifts secured, and the burtons taken off. Now it was down to the work of reeving reef-tackles and maintops'l sheets. Boyles set his men to the task, keeping a weather eye on them as they went about it.On reeving
; Reef-tackles and other gear